I’m really glad you made it here today. You're probably wondering a few things about me: 1) how I can help you and 2) if I have an illness too. That’s cool.
I have witnessed serious angst, suffering and pain, including my own, and draw on it to encourage your own bravery to meet whatever confronts you in life. I have an autoimmune disease, and I understand the ways illness can smack you in the face and shake you to the core.
I learned a few things while dealing with a life-disrupting and stressful illness. Staying in the "why me?" mentality kept me stuck when I really wanted to move forward. Fighting against my illness kept my body in a battle with itself, and I could not heal. Sometimes you just can't make sense of it, until you do, and then suddenly you realize your illness had something really important to teach you. And finally, although one's body may be sick, one's mind can be at peace.
I had my own ways of dealing with illness, but let's find YOURS.
A Perfect Storm
I love working with people with medical conditions. Illness can create a “perfect storm” that exposes and magnifies every stuck place and unworkable behavior we have. This lays a path for MAJOR healing and growth. Each person has their own set of obstacles to navigate, and with time, most see some positive changes. But the powerful stuff comes when you use illness to transform deeply held unconscious beliefs and patterns, expand your awareness of possibility, and create meaning and fulfillment in your relationship with yourself and others. The work moves fluidly between everyday life challenges and bigger spiritual or philosophical explorations. That's what it's all about.
Here's the boring stuff that supposedly makes me credible:
I'm licensed in the state of Washington as a Mental Health Counselor (#LH60159227). I have a Master's degree in Clinical Counseling from Seattle University and a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from the University of Washington. I'm a member of the Association for Contextual Behavioral Science.
I practiced in Seattle for the first 11 years of my career. Before starting my private practice I worked in mental health and government agencies primarily with at-risk teens and families. I began working in health psychology as a Research Therapist testing Acceptance & Commitment Therapy in health behavior change research studies at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. I moved back to my hometown of Gig Harbor in 2016, where my practice is today.
I'm grounded in Acceptance & Commitment Therapy, a coherent theoretical and philosophical framework, and empirically based psychological intervention that uses acceptance and mindfulness strategies, together with commitment and behavior change strategies, to increase psychological flexibility. Psychological flexibility means contacting the present moment fully as a conscious human being and, based on what the situation affords, changing or persisting in behavior in the service of chosen values.
Coping with illness is about reaching beyond your distress to the larger purpose of your life so you can get on really living.
ready to get started?